High-Performance Computing (HPC) has emerged as a vital instrument for tackling intricate scientific and engineering challenges that demand substantial computational capabilities and large-scale data management. Storage subsystems play a pivotal role in ensuring the efficacy and dependability of HPC operations by facilitating rapid input/output (I/O) speeds, thereby minimizing data access and processing times, particularly in data-intensive applications. The performance of storage systems significantly influences overall system efficiency and productivity in such contexts. Moreover, high-performance storage solutions offer scalable, adaptable, and resilient data management strategies, enabling users to manage and analyze enormous datasets with proficiency. Consequently, examining various high-performance storage systems and solutions is critical for optimizing the potential of HPC infrastructures, fostering scientific advancement, and propelling innovation across diverse domains such as climate modeling, pharmaceutical research, and materials science.

To broaden the understanding and knowledge of storage solution capabilities in different scenarios and overcome the limitations imposed by personal and computational constraints during routine HPC operations, the Scalable Storage Competition (SSC) has been established. This competition not only contributes to ongoing research but also provides students with the opportunity to engage with sophisticated HPC systems, their components, and specific configurations, enhancing their teamwork skills, participating in a collegial contest, and offering networking opportunities within their peer group and the professional HPC community.

Benefits for participants

The Scalable Cluster Competition offers an array of incentives to motivate participants, acknowledging their hard work and fostering collaboration:

  1. Recognition and Awards: Winning teams receive small trophies and certificates of attendance, sponsored by providers and committee members, signifying their achievement and expertise in the field.
  2. In-Kind Prizes: Participants have the chance to win valuable in-kind prizes, including hardware equipment and AWS credits, which can support their future projects and enhance their computing capabilities.
  3. Speaking Platform: The competition provides a speaking opportunity for the teams to showcase their approaches and results both within the Scalable Storage Competition (SSC) and at the International Supercomputing Conference (ISC) Birds of a Feather (BoF) session, giving winners and selected voices a platform to share their insights, to engage with peers and experts, sharing their experiences and learning from others.
  4. Networking Opportunities: The competition encourages networking among participants, fostering connections with potential employers, collaborators, and industry experts, opening doors for future opportunities and partnerships.
  5. IO500 Ranking: Teams can submit their valid IO500 results, contributing to the IO500 leaderboard and gaining international recognition within the high performance computing community.

These incentives not only celebrate the achievements of the teams but also contribute to their professional growth and foster a supportive and competitive environment within the high performance computing community.

Course of the events

Details about the conduction of the event can be found here: SSC - Course of the competition


The SSC will take place beginning from June 2024 to May 2025. The final roadmap depends on the number of teams. The general roadmap with deadlines/dates is as follows:

  1. Team/Sponsor application deadline: 2024-08-31
  2. Team selection deadline: 2024-09-13
  3. S^3 - Storage Summer School - Training by Vendors and GWDG: 2024-10-21 - 2024-10-24
  4. Kick-off and shared access: 2024-10-25
  5. End shared access: 2024-11-01
  6. Exclusive access/campaign: 2024-11-04 - 2025-02-28
  7. Review/Rating: March 2025
  8. Reveal and discussion (SSC Teams + Organization): April 2025
  9. Results Presentation at BoF ISC: May 2025

For details on the conduction of the competition c.f. SSC- Course of the competition